Canada, US & Mexico to announce joint support for Unique UBC-led Research Facility in Banff, Alberta

The Governments of Alberta, Canada, Mexico, and the United States will announce new funding for the Banff International Research Station (BIRS), a world-leading UBC-led mathematical research facility which hosts annually thousands of top international scientists and researchers.

WHAT: BIRS Funding Announcement & Reception

WHEN: Saturday, September 25, 2010

Live webcast at

3:00pm MDT: Public lecture by Dr. Rita Colwell, Former Director of the National Science Foundation entitled Climate, Oceans and Infectious Disease: The Cholera Paradigm.

Introduction by Dr. Tom Brzustowski, former President of NSERC.

4:00pm MDT: Formal announcement

4:45pm MDT: News conference

5:00pm MDT: Reception

WHERE: The Banff Centre

Max Bell Building

107 Tunnel Mountain Drive

Banff, Alberta T0L 0C0

Media are invited to attend.

Speakers will include Government of Canada MP for Calgary Centre Lee Richardson, MLA Greg Weadick of the Government of Alberta, Dr. Suzanne Fortier, President of NSERC, Dr. José Antonio de la Pena, Deputy Director of the Consejo Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnologia of Mexico, Dr. Sastry Pantula, Director of DMS, National Science Foundation, Dr. John Hepburn, Vice-President Research for the University of British Columbia, Dr. Rose Goldstein, Vice-President Research for the University of Calgary, Dr. Arvind Gupta, Scientific Director of MITACS and Ms. Mary Hofstetter, President of the Banff Centre.

About the Banff International Research Station (BIRS)

Created in 2003, BIRS is a joint Canada-US-Mexico initiative that addresses the imperatives of collaborative and cross-disciplinary research with a focus on the mathematical, statistical and computer sciences and their vast array of applications in the sciences and in industry. The goal of BIRS is to facilitate intense and prolonged interactions between scientists in a secluded environment, and for uninterrupted research activities. Each year, BIRS – headquartered at the University of British Columbia and with a station is located on the site of the renowned Banff Centre – hosts over 2,000 researchers from 400 institutions in more than 60 countries. BIRS hosts annually a series of 49 weekly workshops each hosting up to 42 researchers from all over the world.  For more information, visit

Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) (Canada): NSERC aims to make Canada a country of discoverers and innovators for the benefit of all Canadians. The agency supports university students in their advanced studies, promotes and supports discovery research, and fosters innovation by encouraging Canadian companies to participate and invest in postsecondary research projects.

The National Science Foundation (NSF) (USA): The NSF is an independent federal agency created by Congress in 1950 “to promote the progress of science; to advance the national health, prosperity, and welfare; to secure the national defense.”

Consejo Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnologia (CONACYT) (Mexico) : CONACYT  responds to the country’s priority demands, provides solutions to specific problems and needs in ways that contribute to raising the standard of living and the social welfare of the citizens of Mexico by increasing the country’s scientific and technologic capacity, competitiveness and innovation in enterprises.

Alberta Advanced Education and Technology: In Collaboration with Campus Alberta and Alberta Innovates, Advanced Education and Technology strives to build a prosperous province through a dynamic and integrated advanced learning and innovation system built on a foundation of highly skilled people in support of a knowledge-based economy and society in Alberta.

BIRS Scientific Director – The BIRS Scientific Director is appointed by the BIRS board for a five-year, renewable term. Nassif Ghoussoub is the founder of BIRS and has been its Scientific Director since 2004. He was the founding Director of the Pacific Institute for the Mathematical Sciences (PIMS) and a co-founder of the Mathematics of Information Technology and Complex Systems network of centres of excellence (MITACS).

Media inquiries may be directed to:

Dr. Nassif Ghoussoub, BIRS Scientific Director, Professor, UBC Dept. of Mathematics

604-822-1649 email:


Dr. Nassif Ghoussoub, BIRS Scientific Director
Professor, UBC Dept. of Mathematics
604-822-1649 email: